Application no. 60726/00
by Sergey Vladimirovich IVANCHENKO
The European Court of Human Rights (Second Section), sitting on 7 February 2006 as a Chamber composed of:
Mr J.-P. Costa, President,
Mr I. Cabral Barreto,
Mr V. Butkevych,
Mrs A. Mularoni,
Mrs E. Fura-Sandström,
Ms D. Jočienė,
Mr D. Popović, judges,
And Mrs S. Dollé, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 3 April 2000,
Having regard to the partial decision of 17 February 2004,
Having regard to the observations submitted by the respondent Government on 15 July 2004 and the observations in reply submitted by the applicant on 1 September 2004,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
THE FACTS, RELEVANT DOMESTIC LAW AND PRACTICE AND THE APPLICANT’S COMPLAINTS
The circumstances of the case, the relevant domestic law and practice and the applicant’s complaints are summarised in the partial decision of the Court given in the instant case (see Ivanchenko, Samoylov and Ivanchenko v. Ukraine (dec.), nos. 60726/00, 22947/02 and 22966/02, 17 February 2004). In sum, the applicant had been suspected of involvement in terrorist offences and criminal proceedings were instituted against him. He complained, inter alia, that he had been ill-treated in custody, his initial detention had been unlawful, the criminal proceedings were unfair, his conditions of detention had been sub-standard and his family visits unjustifiably curtailed. He invoked Article 3, 5, 6, 8 and 13 of the Convention.
Notice of the application was given to the Government on 17 February 2004. The applicant was granted legal aid on 17 December 2004. He was later asked to inform the Court if he had appointed a legal representative. On 3 February 2005 the applicant informed the Court that he could continue to act on his own behalf, or his wife could represent him. The applicant was again requested to appoint a lawyer and provide a letter of authority by 7 April 2005. However, the applicant again replied that that he wished to present his case in person or, alternatively, be represented by his wife.
On 23 March 2005 the President of the Second Section decided that a lawyer’s participation in the instant case was essential, as the case was complex from a legal and factual point of view, and a lawyer’s participation was necessary to facilitate its examination. He therefore invited the applicant to appoint a lawyer and submit, by 29 April 2005, a letter of authority for his representation before the Court, as required by Rule 36 §§ 2 and 4(a) of the Rules of the Court, which provides in so far as relevant:
“... Following notification of the application to the respondent Contracting Party under Rule 54 § 2 (b), the applicant should be represented in accordance with paragraph 4 of this Rule, unless the President of the Chamber decides otherwise.
... 4. (a) The representative acting on behalf of the applicant pursuant to paragraphs 2 and 3 of this Rule shall be an advocate authorised to practise in any of the Contracting Parties and resident in the territory of one of them, or any other person approved by the President of the Chamber.”
The applicant failed to appoint a representative or submit such a letter of authority. On 24 May 2005 the Registry reminded the applicant to do so. However, he failed to respond. A reminder was sent by registered post on 9 September 2005, warning the applicant of the possibility that his case might be struck out of the Court’s list of case if he failed to comply with the President’s decision.
The applicant’s former representative Ms Inna Ivanchenko (the applicant’s wife) received this letter on 20 September 2005 in person. On 12 October 2005, another of the applicant’s initial representatives, Mr Valeriy Romanov (also not a lawyer) replied to the Court that he had received no information about the proceedings in the present application since September 2004. He also informed the Court that he and Ms Inna Ivanchenko still wished to act on behalf of the applicant in the proceedings before the Court.
On 21 November 2005 the Registry reminded both of the applicant’s former representatives, Ms Inna Ivanchenko and Mr Valeriy Romanov, of the applicant’s failure to provide the name of a legal representative, as required by Rule 36 § 4(a) of the Rules of Court and the decision of the Chamber President on 23 March 2005, as requested from him on three occasions (14 February, 21 June and 9 September 2005). It also informed them and the applicant that “the Court might decide that the applicant is no longer interested in pursuing his application and that the case should be struck out from the list of cases pending before it under Rule 43 of the Rules [of Court]”.
No response was received to this letter.
However, the Court finds that it cannot continue the examination of the present application without the appropriate legal representation of the applicant. It recalls that the applicant received reminders on the subject but failed to comply, despite the grant of legal aid and a warning that his application might be struck out of the list. In these circumstances and having regard to Article 37 § 1 (c) of the Convention, the Court concludes that it is no longer justified to continue the examination of the application. Furthermore, in accordance with Article 37 § 1 in fine, the Court finds no special circumstances regarding respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require the further examination of this case. Accordingly, the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention to the case should be discontinued.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Disjoins the case from application nos. 22947/02 and 22966/02;
Decides to strike the application out of its list of cases.
S. Dollé J.-P. Costa
IVANCHENKO v. UKRAINE DECISION
IVANCHENKO v. UKRAINE DECISION